Case Detail

Case Summary

Educational Technology Corporation: Crossing the Chasm

Case Number: 5-104-032, Year Published: 2004

HBS Number: KEL095

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Authors: Mohanbir Sawhney; Rosalie Chin; Jennifer Ord; Noam Ragins; Kris Rich; Liza Wintroub

Key Concepts

Marketing Strategy, Marketing to Non-Profit Institutions, Innovation Adoption, Segmentation, Targeting, Positioning, Sales Force Strategy, Interactive Learning Technologies


Todd Wilson, manager of partner development at Educational Technology Corporation (ETC), needed to determine the targeting, positioning, and selling strategy for its innovative Interactive Mathematics software for the college market. He needed to decide what types of colleges to target, and what stakeholders to focus on within the institution. His task is complicated by the unclear objectives of non-profit institutions and by the differing motivations of teachers, students, and college administrators in adopting software-based learning technology. The case highlights the difficulties in innovation adoption within large non-profit institutions, and the challenges in marketing to institutions with complex decision-making processes, multiple influencers, and conflicting motivations.

Number of Pages: 24

Extended Case Information

Teaching Areas: Marketing, Technology

Geographic: USA, West Coast

Industry: Higher Education, Software

Organization Name: Educational Technology Corporation

Organization Department: Business Development

Organization Size: Small

Decision Maker Position: Manager of Partner Development

Decision Maker Gender: Male

Year of Case: 1996